Koike Urges Ioc To Let Tokyo Hold Marathon

Koike urges IOC to let Tokyo hold marathon

Tokyo Governor Yuriko Koike says Tokyo still wants to host the 2020 Olympics marathon and race walking events that the International Olympic Committee plans to move to the northern city of Sapporo.

Koike met the head of the IOC coordination commission, John Coates, on Friday.

Koike said the IOC announcement about changing the site surprised her and Tokyo residents. She said Tokyo's municipality officials and citizens are very much looking forward to and preparing to host the events.

She added that no convincing explanation has been made.

The governor also said she wants to discuss the matter at a meeting of the coordination committee next week.

Coates referred to the world track and field championship in Doha, Qatar, where many marathon and race walking athletes dropped out due to intense heat.

He said the IOC was shocked by what it saw in Doha and had the health and welfare of the athletes in mind when it decided to change the venue.

Coates told Koike that he recognizes Tokyo's great disappointment, but that the IOC has made the decision.